New year, new challenges, new attempts

Last year, I wrote just under 81,000 words and spent about 91 hours on research, read throughs, and revision.  I submitted a short story seven times and got rejected seven times.  I put up five blog posts, and read 63 books–20 in audio, 19 electronic, and 11 paper.  And I included shorts and comics/graphic novels in there, too.  Would’ve been 65 books, if I counted the two I just finished, but I read the majority of them this year, not last.

I didn’t exercise anywhere near as regularly as I wanted–mainly because of the foot issue (saw the doctor yesterday, got two shots this time–one for the neuroma, one for a joint because apparently some of the pain is from that), and in December our bathroom got renovated so there was a door being stained in the basement and my treadmill had to be moved for access to the water shutoff thingie, and lots of stuff taking up space in my room.  Plus holiday travel and all that.

So this year.

I’ve already started exercising, and I’m hoping I can keep up the habit until it just happens and I don’t have to think about it.  I’ve already seen an improvement–I bought a new fitbit that’s got a heart rate monitor, and when I would occasionally check it, the number was usually in the 80s, and after one day of exercise it dropped into high 70s, and then into low 70s. Except for yesterday, but I’m pretty sure that was caffeine and doctor visit anxiety.

The writing thing I tried–monetary and other rewards for writing so much and doing so many things–didn’t really work.  Not because I didn’t get the writing done, but because I got really bad about keeping track like I should.  So I had the thought that I should turn it into a game type thing–with experience, leveling up, rewards, and all that.  Except I really had no idea where to start, so I tried searching for something to help.

And I discovered Habitica.  It’s available on the website, and as apps, and it gamifies life.  I put in different things I want to accomplish–divided into to-do, habits, and dailies–and each one I complete gives me experience and in-game money.  The in-game money lets me buy armor and weapons and stuff, and I can also make my own rewards.  I’ve been using it since Sunday, and I keep wanting to find stuff to add to do so that I can check it off and gain experience.  But I’m not, because I’ve got quite a few things on there already that I’ve been needing to do for a while.  Like clean my room. And my desk.  And find a place for all my clothes.

I’ve seen The Force Awakens three times.  Once in the theater Rob and I normally visit, once in a really awesome theater in Texas–assigned reclining seats, giant screen, free popcorn and drink refills, and I find it incredibly amusing it’s in the old K-Mart building–and then IMAX 3D.  Not a fan of the 3D viewing–not so much because I didn’t care for the 3D, it was good although not necessary, but more because the glasses for the IMAX theater sat really uncomfortably over my own glasses.  I don’t have any trouble with the glasses at the usual theater.  But yeah, loved the movie, and of course I want to see it again.  Cause really, I’ve only seen it three times.  I saw The Phantom Menace nine times.  Though that was a little bit easier because it was during college, during summer break, and I didn’t have a job or anything like that to worry about.

I should make that a reward in Habitica–I’ve already made a higher-priced reward for seeing Rogue One.

This year, Rob and I are keeping our convention plans at a minimum.  The bathroom reno and holidays and trip to Texas all happened close together, so we’re playing a bit of catch-up, plus Rob’s got a lot of issues that’ve cropped up with his car registration being due. And saving up to go to Helsinki for WorldCon in 2017.  So this year we’re going to Boskone because we really like that one, we’re thinking about ReaderCon, and our big trip is supposed to be the Writing Excuses cruise.  I’m not a big fan of ships–no matter how big–or the Caribbean, but a weeklong writing workshop is something that I think will really help.

And going back to writing, I’m working on revisions for my urban fantasy novel and handing it off to Rob to read through to get his take before doing another revision pass and sending to other beta readers (once I find some), and I’m about halfway through my read through, and I don’t think it’s quite as bad as I feared it would be.  Once I’ve done that, and while I’m waiting on Rob, I’m going to start a space opera.  And I’m trying something different this time.  Writing Excuses season 10 was done as a year-long writing class, and I’ve gone back to the first episode of that and am trying to work through the space opera with the lessons and exercises there.  This is the best piece to try with because it’s a story I really want to do, but I’ve also done very little to flesh it out, aside from a couple random snippets of character and scene.

So let’s see…that means for this year I’m going to attempt to exercise regularly, revise a novel draft, start/write a new novel rough draft, go on a cruise, and try to see The Force Awakens about seven times more.

It could happen.

About Rachel

I'm a writer in progress, and in my day job I copyedit/solve puzzles.
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